Uma’s Spiced Coconut Quinoa

This coconut quinoa dish is a variation of a traditional South Indian Tamil rice pilaf called Thenga Sadham (coconut rice). In this version my cousin Uma made the same coconut rice but with quinoa instead of rice when we went for lunch one weekend. Continue reading Uma’s Spiced Coconut Quinoa

Cookies, Cookies, Sweet Treats, and More Cookies!

Last week I got a post from one of my blog followers/reader Mackenzie, with a very novel social gathering. Her blog, which is, had sent a request a couple weeks earlier asking her readers to submit their favorite cookie recipes for a cookie party she was hosting which she called a meet and greet party. I assumed she was asking for recipes for a cookie exchange party she was hosting at her home.


Continue reading Cookies, Cookies, Sweet Treats, and More Cookies!

Herbal Transformations. Ancient Wisdom Revealed for Health and Longevity by Uma Swaminathan

Herbal Transformations: Ancient Wisdom Revealed for Health and Longevity Using Herbs and Spices, Yoga, Hygiene and Spirituality. The title says it all. My aunt Uma Swaminathan is the author of this wonderful book that gives you valuable information about Indian spices and herbs and also shows you how to use them to enhance the positive aspects of those spices and herbs. Continue reading Herbal Transformations. Ancient Wisdom Revealed for Health and Longevity by Uma Swaminathan

Rani’s Goat Cheese, Apple & Honey on Cracker

Rani is our resident foodie. She loves gourmet foods, and has an adventurous palate. Her favorite thing to do on weekends is to make fun creative appetizers when the regular run of the mill afternoon snacks won’t do. Out of this need for something gourmet, came this amazing little goat cheese appetizer. Continue reading Rani’s Goat Cheese, Apple & Honey on Cracker

Ranjit’s South Indian Pan Sautéed Fish

My brother-in-law Ranjit is an amazing cook. He made this outstanding South Indian pan sautéed fish one evening when we visited him and my sister in Philadelphia over the summer. The whole family loved it, kids and adults alike. Being vegetarian I didn’t taste it, but what he made looked so good that I wished I did eat fish. Ranjit served the fish with rice and the combination of golden yellow fish and fluffy white basmati rice looked positively gorgeous on the plate. I asked Ranjit to share the recipe, and here it is. Continue reading Ranjit’s South Indian Pan Sautéed Fish

Starbucks Coffee. Not So Fashionable, But Always in Style

I’m one of those people who stopped going to Starbucks years ago. Starbucks was good when I first started drinking coffee.  When I needed a mild coffee to indoctrinate myself to the coffee drinking culture of the techy Bay Area. Starbucks coffee satisfied me plenty for many years. But as my palate started getting sophisticated, Starbucks coffee just didn’t cut it anymore. I noticed that their coffee felt weak, I would have to put two shots of espresso in my latte to get the oomph that I wanted. But I didn’t like paying for that extra shot every time. I even tried their regular brewed coffee, but that felt watered down and weak too.  I slowly just stopped going to Starbucks as new coffee shops started popping up all over the Bay Area. Peets is my favorite, Barefoot Coffee is great, Chromatic Coffee is good, Verve is great too, now there is Philz Coffee close by, and then there is Blue Bottle Coffee too; the list goes on and on. Who needs Starbucks now? Continue reading Starbucks Coffee. Not So Fashionable, But Always in Style

Asparagus and Peas Puff Pastry Pizza

Long-time friends Nishma and Kamal invited us for dinner one Saturday evening along with our other long-time friends Swati and Tarak. Our three families have known each other for over 20 years and have seen our kids grow from babies to adults. When we get together it’s like family getting together for a great time and great company.

Nishma is an amazing cook and enjoys cooking for her family and friends. This dinner was one of those occasions when we got to try one of her new creative dishes. It was an appetizer and it was outstanding. It was a Asparagus and Peas Puff Pastry Pizza. It makes a wonderful first course with wine or even to have as a late afternoon snack with the family on a lazy Sunday afternoon. Here is the recipe. Continue reading Asparagus and Peas Puff Pastry Pizza

Scandinavian Baking by Trine Hahnemann

Have you heard of FIKA? I hadn’t. Not until a few months ago that is, when I was catching up on my daily world news on I came across an article that read  Why Are Swedish Workers So Happy?.  This article was about FIKA, the Swedish workplace tradition of taking a coffee break with sweet treats and chatting. In many companies in Sweden this coffee break is not only encouraged but in some offices it is actually  mandatory.  Research has shown that taking a work-place coffee break leads to happier and more productive employees. Continue reading Scandinavian Baking by Trine Hahnemann

William’s Carrot Ginger Soup

I had the most delicious soup when we were invited to dinner at our friends Stella and William’s place one evening late last summer. Going to their home for dinner is always a fun treat. On this evening Stella and William had prepared a delicious meal of carrot ginger soup, vegetable lasagna, and a couple of local Ghanna dishes such as a thick well-seasoned stew and fried plantains. Everything was delicious. One of our favorite dishes was the carrot ginger soup which was in a league of its own. It was not your run of the mill carrot ginger soup, this was creamy and sweet with herbs and just the right amount of heat from the ginger; and the best part is that it was the easiest soup to make. Continue reading William’s Carrot Ginger Soup

recipes and stories from our home